Apple Facing Potential Class Action For MacBook Pro Retina Display Ghosting Problems

Live by the sword, die by the sword. Apple has taken the path of the courts to settle the hash of its competitors, and now one of its customers is giving the Cupertino company a taste of its own medicine. A fellow named Beau Hodges filed suit against Apple for allowing its customers to buy MacBook Pros with shoddy Retina displays, and it’s possible that the case could become a class-action lawsuit of others that have experienced the problem jump in.

The issue pertains to ghosting on the MacBook Pro screens, which can occur with IPS displays after an image is left on the screen for a long period of time. A number of users have complained about this issue--see this very lengthy Apple support thread--and after paying out the nose for Apple’s premier Retina display, it’s not hard to imagine that users are ticked off about it.

MacBook Pro

Here’s the kicker: According to the International Business Times, MacBook Pro displays are made both by LG and Samsung, and it appears that the ghosting is happening only on the LG displays. (If you listen carefully, you can hear Samsung crowing all the way from South Korea.)

It’s hard to imagine that Apple didn’t know that ghosting was a potential problem on the LG displays. The company made its name with Steve Jobs at the helm by paying excruciating attention to both design and engineering, but this is sloppy.

In any case, Apple says that although it’s aware that ghosting can be an issue with IPS displays, a support post says that persistent images will fade over time and that if the display goes to sleep or users employ a screen saver, it won’t be an issue. Both settings are enabled by default in Mac OS X. Nevertheless, it is an issue that users are experiencing, and now Apple has a lawsuit on its hands that could grow quickly.